Russian visitor numbers to Cuba surpassed 100,000 in 2017, an increase of 67 percent from the previous year. Russia exports to Cuba also jumped 81 percent, up to $225 million during the January-September period, official Russian data shows. “We can call this period a renaissance,” Aleksandr Bogatyr, Russia’s trade representative in Cuba, said in an interview With Reuters. Russia is Cuba’s largest trading partner, second to China. One hundred miles away, Trump pulls back relationship-building efforts with Caribbean nation. The island clearly remains a geopolitical and economic backdrop for the U.S. Overall, we are discouraged by decades of misguided U.S. policy toward Cuba and Latin America more generally.